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Statement of the Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People regarding two years of missing since kidnapping of Ervin Ibragimov May 24, 2018

Two years ago, on May 24, 2016, 31 years old Ervin Ibragimov, a member of the Executive Committee of the World Congress of Crimean Tatars, and a member of the Bakhchisaray regional Mejlis, was kidnapped in Bakhchisaray of temporarily occupied Crimea.

A video from a surveillance camera located at a store near the place of the incident, recorded that Ervin Ibragimov was stopped by people in the police uniform of the Russian Federation on night May 24 to May 25, 2016. After Ervin got out of his car, people in uniform pulled him into the minibus. Ervin tried to fight back, but the attackers forcefully pushed him into the vehicle. Since that moment, nobody saw Ervin and he did not leave any message.

It is exactly two years since that day, the Russian occupation authorities frankly demonstrate unwillingness to solve this crime, to find Ervin and bring the perpetrators to justice. Despite the numerous appeals of the Ervin Ibragimov`s parents to the Crimean Tatar, Ukrainian and world public, and resolutions and appeals of international organizations, the occupation authorities in Crimea are limited only by imitation of the investigation.

All these indicates that the kidnapping of Ervin Ibragimov is the work of the Russian occupation regime. Ervin is a notable figure in the Crimean Tatar national movement. Despite his young age, he is respected among a wide range of activists and public figures, both inside Crimea and among the Crimean Tatar Diaspora. He was never afraid of defending his principled civic position towards the occupant. His kidnapping became a demonstration of the arbitrariness of the Russian occupation regime, that aimed to create an atmosphere of fear among the Crimean Tatar people.

Especially cynical became the yesterday’s Kremlin's attempt to kidnap the delegate of the Qurultay of the Crimean Tatar People – Asan Egizov. He is the same young aged, and an outstanding activist of the Crimean Tatar movement, and the way of his kidnapping is almost identical to the way of Ervin's kidnapping, happened two years ago. Asan Egizov was also stopped by traffic police, and was forcefully pushed into a minibus by unknown people, after that, a connection with him was lost. Only a few hours later he was found in the forest with bodily injuries. The demonstration of a beastly behavior of the occupational authorities, who knew about the resonance that will be known later, leaves no doubt about the bestial nature of the enemy we are dealing with.

On behalf of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, I appeal to the international organizations – the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the European Union, and the OSCE – to take all necessary measures for effective investigation of all the circumstances of Ervin Ibragimov's kidnapping, and bringing the perpetrators to justice.

Realizing that, only the liberation of Crimea, as soon as possible, from the Russian occupation will put an end to the physical, cultural, spiritual destructions of the Crimean Tatar people, and only the restoration of Ukraine's sovereignty over the Crimean peninsula will guarantee the observance of human rights and ensure their personal safety, we call on Heads of states and international organizations to involve all measures to force the Russian Federation to return to the limits of international law.

On this sad day, we express our support to the parents, relatives and friends of Ervin Ibragimov.

Together with them we are keeping our hope for the happy return of our friend, companion, ally.

 

Refat Chubarov,
Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people

Kyiv, May 24, 2018

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